Eternals

Directed by Chloé Zhao

Starring Gemma Chan, Richard Madden, Kumail Nanjiani, Lia McHugh, Brian Tyree Henry, Lauren Ridloff, Barry Keoghan, Don Lee, Harish Patel, Salma Hayek, and Angelina Jolie

Backstory

We’re really getting into the deep cuts now for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. But I’m still on board with the franchise. They said Guardians of the Galaxy was too deep a cut, but now, Groot is everywhere. Not only that, but Oscar-winning director Chloé Zhao is running the show! With a proven track record and an Oscar-winner behind the camera, how could Marvel go wrong?

Plot

Eternals. Immortal beings created by god-like beings called the Celestials, and sent out to worlds to help burgeoning life grow and evolve. And to also protected said life from Deviants, monstrous creatures who feed on life. The Eternals of Earth eradicated the last of Earth’s Deviants centuries ago, and have gone their separate ways, living among humans. But now, the Deviants have returned, and they have a new objective: they’re hunting down Eternals. The Eternals must reunite to solve the mystery of these new Deviants, and along the way, uncover some harsh truths about their true mission on Earth. With the Eternals be able to stop the Deviants once again and save the Earth?

What I Liked

So many great new characters are introduced here. They’re led by Sersi, played by Gemma Chan, who is struggling with new role as leader. Kumail Nanjiani, as expected, brings the funny as Kingo, who went off to India and became a big Bollywood star. Lia McHugh as Sprite is the most compelling. She’s immortal, but she’s stuck at age 13, and is starting to grow resentful at having never been able to grow up. And, the casting that made headlines, Angelina Jolie as Thena, a warrior who’s millennia of battle has given her a sci-fi variation of PTSD. The characters really make it shine.

What I Didn’t Like

With the plethora of new characters, the film does start to feel rather cluttered. Throw in the fact that you’re introducing new concepts like the Celestials, and it all gets to be a little too much. And when you start throwing in too much, it starts feeling a little too long. It’s like Avengers: Age of Ultron in that way. It’s doing so much set-up for the next phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, that it gets bogged down.

Final Verdict

Marvel’s first attempt at gigantic, cosmic-scale sci-fi is a bit of a miss, but it has one hell of a cliffhanger ending that makes me want to see how it all plays out. Good, but not great.

2.5 Nibs

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